There’s hope yet for out-of-town commuters — and maybe even the city itself: The James A. Farley Post Office has been transformed into an elegant and spacious train station, an addition to Penn Station across the street featuring a sunlight-bathing 92-foot-high skylight.
Kudos to Gov. Cuomo, who deserves credit for seeing the renovation through, three decades after Sen. Daniel Patrick Moynihan first suggested it.
Moynihan Train Hall, as it’s called, opened Friday, and it’s part of a $1.6 billion project that will include elaborate lounges, restaurants and passageways to Penn Station. The new facility will serve LIRR, MTA and Amtrak passengers, easing crowding and offering a pleasant ambiance.
Unfortunately, Penn itself remains a dingy hellhole — ugly, dirty and rife with the homeless and the mentally ill. The pandemic only aggravated the situation, with squatters becoming more desperate in Penn’s largely empty corridors. The sparkling MTH will make Penn look even more disgusting by comparison.
So now the question becomes: When can commuters — notably, NJ Transit riders who’ll still be relying on the 7th Avenue site — expect to see Penn look anything like Moynihan? Will the city, state or Amtrak (which owns Penn) ever get serious about providing services for vagrants and clearing out space, so commuters don’t have to watch where they step?
If these underlying problems aren’t addressed, you can be sure it won’t be long before Moynihan is as bad as Penn is now.
And that’s no way to lure back work-from-home out-of-towners, post-COVID.
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